Cheap & Easy

The Best Bang for Your Buck Events in Portland This Weekend: Sept 9-11, 2022

Belmont Street Fair, Portland Dragon Boat Festival, and More Cheap & Easy Events Under $15
September 9, 2022
Make like a velociraptor and sprint over to Dinolandia before the museum goes extinct at the end of the weekend. (Janey Wong)
Portland is making the most out of these late summer days, squeezing in fun outdoor events from the Belmont Street Fair to the Portland Dragon Boat Festival and from the 10th Annual Catio Tour to ReClaim It and Cracked Pots: 2nd Annual Block pARTy. Plus, don't miss your last chance to see Dinolandia!

Oregon’s statewide mask mandate has been lifted, venues may have their own health guidelines in place. We advise directly checking the specific protocols for an event before heading out.

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Kickstand Presents: Honey Pot Comedy Add to a List
This rotating showcase brings together scrappy new improvisers, stand-uppers, and sketch comics for a pay-what-ya-can evening of comedy presented by inclusive nonprofit Kickstand Comedy.
(Honey Latte Cafe, Buckman, Pay What You Want)


Godzilla Add to a List
When American nuclear testing awakens a gargantuan reptilian monster from centuries of sleep, utter mayhem is unleashed on Japan. Ishirō Honda's original telling of the big green monster tale became a cult phenomenon, inspiring over thirty sequels.
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy, $8)


Dolphin Midwives with Crystal Quartez Add to a List
Dolphin Midwives is a solo project of Portland-based artist Sage Fisher, who is known for combining classical instruments like the harp and zither with electronic technology that results in an experimental explosion of ethereal bliss. Plus, don't miss opening performances from fellow multimedia/sound artists Crystal Quartez, meroitic, and Morher.
(Polaris Hall, Humboldt, $15)

Johnny Franco Add to a List
Portland-via-São Paulo troubadour Johnny Franco, who was recently featured on the Jam In The Van YouTube series, will bring his timeless Brazilian-inspired folk tunes to the Doug Fir.
(Doug Fir Lounge, Buckman, $15)

No. 2 (Album Release) Add to a List
Nineties supergroup No. 2, which consists of Neil Gust of Heatmiser (Elliott Smith's first band), Gilly Ann Hanner of Calamity Jane, and Paul Pulvirenti of Eyelids, pulls from the "fuzzy hooks of T-Rex, the heart-cracking harmonies of X, and the pole vaulting riffs and queer subtext of The B-52s" for their pioneering queercore sound. The trio will light up the stage in celebration of their new album, First Love, alongside Seattle rockersFloored Faces and local bedroom-rock project Phone Voice.
(Mississippi Studios, Boise, $12)


Shrek Rave Add to a List
If you've ever wanted to get down swamp style like Donkey, Shrek, Fiona, or Lord Farquaad, here's your chance. You may be asking "Why?" and we guess the only answer would be "Why not?" It's a thing, and a thing whose NYC event was attended by Rico Nasty and Jaboukie Young-White, no less. So what're you waiting for? Get your game on, go playyyy!
(Dante's, Old Town-Chinatown, $15)



Broke Gravy And Friends Add to a List
The Broke Gravy dudes (Chris, Leon, and Eric) have forged a unique path in improv comedy, using the off-the-cuff medium to inspire deeper conversations on their perspectives as Black Americans. (They're also funny AF.) For this performance, storytellers Mary C. Parker, Monica Dailey, and Flynne Olivarez will share on stage, and Broke Gravy will use their stories as fresh comedic inspiration. It's all for a good cause, too—a portion of ticket sales will be donated to Kickstand Comedy’s BIPOC Improv Program.
(Clinton Street Theater, Hosford-Abernethy, $15-$20)

Sorry Not Sorry Add to a List
Hosted by Eliza Butler, Julia Corral, and Marietje Hauprich, this monthly showcase centers stand-up from women, LGBTQIA+, and POC comics. The audience will hear from funny favorites like true crime commentator Arlo Weierhauser and Kate Murphy, host of the Mercury's I, Anonymous Show.
(Leikam Brewing, Mount Tabor, free)

That's What She Said: What Rhymes With Fall? Add to a List
Your fave queer feminist comedy collective returns with leaf-crunchin' autumnal wisecracks from Berlyn Lee, Quinne Salameh, Samhita Reddy, and others. Is it fall yet? Well, no. But this night of stand-up will usher in the forthcoming season with much-needed laughs, and all proceeds from this event will be donated to the Yellowhammer Fund, a reproductive justice organization serving Alabama, Mississippi, and the Deep South.
(Siren Theater, Old Town-Chinatown, $10)


10th Annual Catio Tour Add to a List
Love cats? Think they should have their own clever little apartments where they can hang out, watch birds, and do assorted cat stuff in complete safety? We do too. This tour of funky catios installed throughout Portland might give you some ideas for your own kitty constructions. Tour participants will peep Backyard Habitat-certified spaces, pandemic DIY projects, crafty catio solutions, and more. Plus, you'll probably spot some cute cats, which is reason enough to do anything.
(Various locations, $15)


5th Annual Brazilian Festival Add to a List
We dare you not to smile at this weekend's family-friendly Brazilian Festival, which boasts live music, dance performances, and delicious eats from Latinx-owned vendors like Tierra Del Sol and Principe Maya at the rainbow-hued Mercado. (Portland Mercado, Mount Scott-Arleta, free)

2022 Community Farm Festival Add to a List
Practice land stewardship and mingle with likeminded community members at this day-long celebration at Zenger Farms. You'll get to participate in family-friendly activities, and Zenger Farms will provide snacks, a farm-fresh lunch prepared by community chefs, and goodie bags.
(Zenger Farm, Southeast Portland, free)


Misery in 35mm Add to a List
Hold on to your ankles—Misery will screen in lush 35mm in celebration of horror writer and corgi lover Stephen King's 75th birthday. When a crazed fan traps a romance novelist (played by James Caan—RIP!) in her remote home, the plot of his latest novel threatens to inform his fate.
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $8-$10)

Our Bodies, Our Doctors Screening and Q&A Add to a List
Just in time for the SCOTUS overturn of Roe v. Wade, Portland documentarian Jan Haaken's Our Bodies Our Doctors fights abortion stigma with a close look at the process from doctors' viewpoints. The film might not be for the squeamish—it describes procedures in clear language, no sugarcoating here—but one in three women in the US have had an abortion, so it offers valuable information. Listen up, and stick around after the screening for a panel discussion with Haaken, Portland abortion rights activist Sierra Romesburg, and featured providers Dr. Andrea Chiviarini and Judith Arcana.
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $8-$10)


HeyDay Pop-Up Add to a List
In celebration of Mid-Autumn Festival, Yoonique Tea will unveil its lineup of fall drinks, while HeyDay will sling its signature chewy-crisp rice flour doughnuts in enticing flavors like ube marshmallow, coconut sweet conr, black sesame sugar, and lychee jasmine. It'll be your last chance to catch HeyDay before they open their new cart inside the CORE pod, and if you're lucky, you might even be able to snag some mini snow skin mooncakes (which are are covered in a glutinous rice crust and must be kept frozen, not unlike mochi ice cream).
(Yoonique Tea, Creston-Kenilworth)

Lolo Sparkling Hops Tasting Add to a List
Frugal beverage connoisseurs are sure to enjoy this free tasting of Lolo Sparkling Hops beverages, which are non-alcoholic and infused with Pacific Northwest-grown hops for a nuanced and complex flavor profile. Guests will get to try free samples of the brand's Cascadia Field Blend, Yuzu Orange Blossom, and Pomelo Sage hop waters.
(23rd Avenue Bottle Shop - McMenamins, Northwest Portland, free)

Oktoberfest Add to a List
Throw on some lederhosen and head to this annual Oktoberfest event with live music and performances, German-inspired food and beverages, carnival rides and games, food, vendors, and more.
(Bethany Village, Bethany, free)


Summer Cannibals Add to a List
Here's former Stranger music editor Sean Nelson with a past endorsement: "There's no delicate way to say it: Summer Cannibals fucking rule. They play with the punishing urgency of young Superchunk, songs full of power and abandon but also set alight by excellent pop instincts and shrewd songwriting. Their third album, Full of It, has been a mainstay since its 2016 release, and their live shows are exciting in a way rock bands often don't even bother aspiring to anymore. Too bad for those losers." The beloved local band will be joined by dream pop duo Shady Cove and shoegaze outfit Soft Cheese.
(Mississippi Studios, Boise, $15)


Tropitaal Desi Latino Soundclash with DJ Anjali and The Incredible Kid Add to a List
Tropitaal blends Latin American tropical sounds with rhythms from India to create a unique sound that perfectly soundtracks this recurring dance party. This time around, resident DJs Anjali and The Incredible Kid will be joined by Oakland-based selector Mansaf Mama for a set of SWANA (Southwest Asian and North African) diasporic sounds, mixed with global dance beats including reggaeton, dembow, Afrobeat, and bhangra.
(Goodfoot, Kerns, $12)


Block With Party, Books with Pictures' RCCC Afterparty Add to a List
Rose City Comic Con Add to a List 's "only official afterparty" will bring together superhero stans and comic mavens from near and far, with a reading from Incredible Doom vol. 2 creators Matthew Bogart and Jesse Holden and a "Fan-Castic Four" roundtable of Marvel podcasters like Douglas Wolk, Miles Stokes, Bryan Stratton, and others.
(Books With Pictures, Ladd's Addition, free)

Drag Queen Story Time with Lil Miss Hot Mess Add to a List
Author and "drag queen cat lady" Lil Miss Hot Mess will read from her latest picture book, If You're a Drag Queen and You Know It, encouraging divas of all ages to shine bright. In the words of Hot Mess, "[I'm] not gonna let an anti-democratic group of old white men steal my sparkle." That's the tea!
(Green Bean Books, Vernon, free)


Belmont Street Fair Add to a List
Held annually on the second Saturday of September, the Belmont Street Fair is one of the city's most well-attended street fairs. Stroll down the main stretch of Belmont, which will be closed off to cars for the event, while checking out wares from local vendors and taking in eye-catching performances. The family-friendly outing will also include activities geared toward all ages.
(SE 33rd & Belmont, Sunnyside, free)

Spectrum Art Market Add to a List
Show off your pride with some fresh duds and housewares at this LGBTQ2SIA+ pop-up market. Held every second Saturday through October, the Spectrum Art Market keeps things rainbow-hued and sparkly with artisans hawking ceramics, art, textiles, apparel, jewelry, and accessories. It'll all go down at Q Center, the largest LGBTQ+ community center in the Pacific Northwest.
(Q Center, Boise, free)


Portland Dragon Boat Festival 2022 Add to a List
Watch colorful Hong Kong-style dragon boats cut through the water at Portland's annual dragon boat festival, which is making a fiery return after a two-year hiatus. Local and visiting teams will race a 500-meter section of the Willamette River adjacent to the RiverPlace Marina as spectators cheer them on and enjoy food vendors, a beer garden, and more entertainment.
(Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Downtown, free)


ReClaim It and Cracked Pots: 2nd Annual Block pARTy Add to a List
Skip your Target run this weekend and head to this sustainable art celebration instead—all of the handmade works up for grabs at this block party and sale are made from at least 80% recycled materials. You're bound to find an interesting new piece for your living space, artisans will be present to chat about their process, and a portion of all sales proceeds will be donated to creative waste reduction nonprofit Cracked Pots.
(ReClaim It, Humboldt, free)

TBA: Sasha Wortzel: Dreams of Unknown Islands Add to a List
I will never not be charmed by the experience of holding a seashell up to my ear “to listen to the ocean,” even though I know the sound I’m hearing is my own blood rushing through my head. Florida artist Sasha Wortzel must feel the same way, judging by the 3D-printed conch shells featured in their exhibition Dreams of Unknown Islands. Instead of mimicking the tides, Wortzel’s shells whisper traditional Jewish prayers of spiritual fortitude in the face of grief, recited by the artist’s friends and family. The grief in question here is the ecological kind—the kind of sadness you might feel when wildfire smoke wafts into town each summer, or when wetlands get paved over by luxury resorts. Video projections of sunsets and sea turtles contribute to a peaceful, meditative atmosphere conducive to working through tough emotions. MARTHA DAGHLIAN
(Cooley Gallery at Reed College, Reed, free)



Shine the Light: A Community Celebration Add to a List
If you haven't scoped out Beaverton's ultra-modern performing arts center, here's your chance to explore the shiny new Patricia Reser Center for the Arts—we hear the theater's construction was inspired by a beaver dam. While you're there, enjoy multicultural performances by local groups like Ballet Folklorico Academia, Murray School of Irish Dance, the Maasai Dancers, and more. 
(Patricia Reser Center for the Arts, Beaverton, free)


Flasher with Hot Gum & Collate Add to a List
After the success of their 2018 post-punk-tinged album, Constant Image, the DC-based duo Flasher is back with a sophomore album, Love Is Yours, which employs textural synths and vibe-y melodies for surprisingly danceable electro-pop tunes. They will support the new album alongside like-minded punk bands Hot Gum and Collate.
(Mississippi Studios, Boise, $15)


Heartbeat Silent Disco Sundance Sundays Add to a List
Tune into rotating live DJ channels on provided (and sanitized) noise-canceling headphones while dancing silently under the sunset. Bringyour own blankets, snacks, props, or whatever helps you get into the groove.
(Laurelhurst Park, Laurelhurst, $10)


Ride and Wrench Series Add to a List
This monthly series by Trek Portland consists of a "casual" group ride along the Springwater Corridor followed by a basic bike maintenance clinic. Each month will feature a different basic maintenance skill so you can be self-sufficient in keeping your ride rolling smoothly. Plus, the shop will have tool giveaways that correspond to the skill of the month, and refreshments to keep your mind and body focused.
(Trek Bicycle Westmoreland, Westmoreland, free)



Love, Shakespeare Add to a List
If Shakespeare's theatrical works are feeling a little "played" out—hey, he did write them over 400 years ago!—stop by Curious Comedy Theater for this fully improvised take on an Elizabethan comedy. The off-the-cuff version will skew the Bard's themes and imagery for a fresh production with a rotating cast. 
(Curious Comedy Theater, King, $15, Friday-Saturday)


Chapman Swift Watch Add to a List
Every September, thousands of Portlanders flock to Chapman Elementary School to witness the phenomenon of Vaux's swifts funneling into the school's chimney to roost. Arrive early to snag a prime birding spot, settle in, and enjoy the early fall evening while you wait for the sun to descend. Close to sunset, the birds begin their sky show before tucking in for the night. Plus, Portland Audubon will be on hand most nights of the week with info about the swifts.
(Chapman Elementary School, Northwest Portland, free, Friday-Sunday)


Blue Velvet Add to a List
David Lynch's jazzy '86 dreamscape stars screen beauties Isabella Rossellini and Kyle MacLachlan in a strange investigation that all starts with the discovery of a severed ear. Blue Velvet will be screened in a fresh 4K restoration.
(Hollywood Theatre, Hollywood District, $8-$10, Friday-Sunday)

Portland Deaf Film Festival and Art Fair Add to a List
Centering compelling works by Deaf filmmakers and artists, this film festival and art fair includes a full day of screenings on Saturday, including documentaries and family-friendly flicks, followed by an art fair and display by Deaf-focused accessibility nonprofit Cymaspace on Sunday. 
(Holiday Inn Airport, Sumner, free, Saturday-Sunday)


Pentimento: Community Stories: Memoir, Music and Poetry with Linda Jaramillo Add to a List
Honoring the life of community leader Linda Jaramillo, this afternoon of storytelling, music, and poetry will feature Jaramillo herself as she shares past experiences of racism, empowerment, and advocacy informed by her Latina identity. Actor Emma Fonseca will perform "poetic interludes," and musicians Gerardo Calderon and Joaquin Lopez will share some classic Latin tunes based on Jaramillo's story.
(Multnomah Arts Center, Southwest Portland, free, Saturday-Sunday)

Shroom Show: A Foraging Tour Add to a List
Mycology nerds, we know you're out there. You're probably identifying Boletus edulis right this second. Well, take a breather to check this out—inspired by fungal ecology, Shroom Show: A Foraging Tour blends educational elements with opera, treasure hunting, and more for an organic take on the hero's journey. The show will take place at Tryon Life Community Farm, with ADA-accessible performances also planned at Back Door Theater. Wear your boots, dress for the weather, and bring a basket for the farm performance.
(Tryon Life Community Farm, Forest Highlands, Pay-what-you-can, Friday-Sunday)


Indigenous Marketplace Add to a List
This lively market includes Indigenous and Black vendors, plus live music and a raffle. Don't miss Sherrie Davis's traditional flute performance on Saturday; you'll also find jewelry, beadwork, botanical products, and other handmade wares, so bring some cash to support local entrepreneurs.
(African Youth & Community Organization, Montavilla, free, Saturday-Sunday)

Parkrose Marketplace Add to a List
Parkrose Marketplace would pop up if you searched for "cute outdoor market" in the dictionary. Stop by for live music, a family-friendly beer garden, arts and crafts, jewelry, and clothes. Leashed pups allowed!
(10750 NE Sandy Blvd, Parkrose, free, Saturday-Sunday)


Collective Rage Add to a List
If you're furious about the recent SCOTUS decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade, try channeling that righteous rage into something positive—this group benefit print show prices each piece at $125, and all proceeds will be donated to the National Network of Abortion Funds. Prints can be purchased online and viewed in person at Strange Paradise Gallery, housed within Oregon Contemporary.
(Oregon Contemporary, Kenton, free, Saturday-Sunday)

Dinolandia Add to a List
Whimsical illustrator Mike Bennett presents his latest installation, a two-story immersive museum filled with illustrated life-size dinosaurs. Who needs a trip to Jurassic Park when we've got Dinolandia in the heart of Portland?
(710 SW Yamhill St., Downtown, $5, Friday-Sunday; closing)

People Will Go Take Their Bags and Their Wheelchairs and Go Shopping: Doug Wing and Elmeater Morton Add to a List
Local faves Doug Wing and Elmeater Morton will share bright new works in this collaborative exhibition between progressive art studios North Pole Studio and Elbow Room.
(Oregon Contemporary, Kenton, free, Friday-Sunday)

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